tv Charlie Rose WHUT May 10, 2012 3:00am-4:00am EDT
>> rose: welcome to our program. tonight, we begin with judi dench, tom wilkinson, and john madden about the film "the best exotic marigold hotel." >> india is so-- it's so populated that, you know, that is is very difficult to cope with. as the film relates, it's also-- you literally don't understand the meaning-- at least i didn't feel you could understand the meaning of culture shock until i went there. it's overwhelming because there is so much coming at you, not just conceptually and economically and politically, as tom says, but also what judi's character refers to as the assault on the senses. it's an overwhelming place. but something-- and the film actually encompasses, i think, all possible reactions to the places. >> rose: we continue with a
conversation about russia with andrei kostin. >> i think the oligarch system, which was dominating census during the yeltsin era was a great danger. i think mr. putin moved it away to much more competitive country in business. but if you ask me whether-- was done enough, i would say no. we still don't have... >> rose: a conversation about acting and a conversation about the future of russia when we continue.
from our studios in new york city, this is charlie rose. >> come and spend your autumn years in an indian palace. this is the day. it's a luxury development where all the residents are in their golden years. >> like the coast of florida. >> yeah, but with more elephants. >> flight 247 is boarding now. >> would you like some of this? >> >> if i can't pronounce it, i don't want to eat it. >> is this your first time in india? >> yes, do you think it will be all right? >> it's going to be extraordinary. >> welcome to the best exotic marigold hotel. >> prepare to be amazed.
>> the hotel that's in the brochure. >> in india we have a saying-- everything will be all right in the end. so if it is not all right, it is not yet the end. >> this is a new and different world. the challenge is to cope with it and is not of not just cope but thrive. i got a job, my first ever. i'm about to make the first public speech of my life. >> am i going to make it? >> i'm afraid i gave that up self years ago. >> ah, there you are. good as new. >> really? >> no, of course not ( laughs ) would you like me to not fix that chair? >> how could you bear this country? what do you see that i don't? >> the light, colors, smiles. it teaches me something. >> she wants to thank you for your kindness. >> i haven't been kind. >> you are the only one that acknowledges her. >> i'm not eating that.
>> i have a dream. a home for the elderly so wonderful they will simply refuse to die. >> oh! >> this man is dead. preserve his dignity. >> did i nod off? >> india, like life itself, i suppose, is about what you bring to it. >> that was a gin and tonic. >> know that now. >> "the best exotic marigold hotel." >> you're not worried about the danger of having sex at your age? >> if she dies, she dies. q. we continue talking abou tald hotel," with dame judi dench, the director john madden, and one of the film's stars tom wilkinson. let me start with you, john. how did this come to you? what was the idea brought to you from this? >> well, the idea belongs to deborah moggach, a writer, a british novelist, who i knew
because i was going to do another film of a book of hers. i won't go into all of that, but some marvelous book and a marvelous script, and we actually got upended eight weeks from filming on that because gordon brown, who was the chancellor of the exchequer, outlaud a tax structure being used to finance a lot of films, and that film went down, along with a couple of dozen others this the u.k. it was a bad day, black day for film. but i knew deborah from that and i had read about this book, and and the producer sent me an early draft of the script that deborah had done, adaptation of the book. deborah has quite strong connections with india herself, and she had, i think, this marvelous idea of just exploring what might happen if you outsourced retirement to india,
a place where, as you know, quite a lot of outsourcing goes on. it was a very attractive and provocative idea. and i thought the script was very much sort of raw state at that point. i haven't completely made the transition from book to film and i said to graham i would be very interested in adapting it, but i was about to do another film, actually, with tom as it turned out. and i couldn't do it then, and graham runs a very small production company, and i know what it's like for those production companies. you know you have a cash flow to think about and employees you've got to pay. and i said you can't wait for me to get involved inw this. i think you need to go ahead and make it. and he did then become connected with at least two other directors, i think, and they developed the script. and then it came back to me at should later point after i finished the film with tom, and a project i was doing got pushed back, and he suddenly said, "here, this is open at the moment." so i-- by that time, ol park,
the very talented ol parker had become involved in as the writer. it had come a long way. it still had further to go, i thought, but i found it immensely interesting. >> rose: because? >> because it deals with, you know, an ignored constituency, a neglected constituency, which is old people. ( laughter ) >> rose: or as tom said, think of it as middle age. >> all right, let's say middle aged. you know, you see films about older people but you don't see films which necessarily place th at the center of the story. certainly not in a-- in an ensemble. >> rose: they're there because of action that's happening to them. >> exactly. and they're there, usually, to play the problem person or the difficulty that has to be dealt with. and it seemed to me that was an interesting topic but also to-- a story which actually places
those people in an environment which jolts them out of their normal mode of being seemed wonderful to me. it occurred to me somewhere along the line-- i'm not just saying it because i made a certain film with these two here-- but the exact paradigm for the film is a shakespearean comedy. that's what it is. in this film india stands in for the -- >> rose: india is a character in this film. >> it is a character but it's a realm into which all these people go in which all the values are turned upside down, where different rules apply, where they have to leave their past behind and simply deal with an overwhelming presence and realign themselves emotionally and just in terms of what their life means. and loss plays a part in that. it always does in those plays. and love plays a part in that. as it always does in those plays. so i felt on comfortable territory with that. i felt there was an interesting way of developing the material
and exploring it. >> rose: you said yes immediately, tom, or you said, tell me mr. more mr. madden, if i want to work with these people. >> i think i did. i don't think there was-- i mean, the script came to me-- >> i think you became involved in it in the period when i was doing something else because-- >> and i don't remember reading it for the first time. i never-- you know, i'm very sort of vague about this sort of thing. i mean, i'm glad i did it. but the idea of this, you know, it's a very neat, catchy little... >> rose: idea. >> idea. drab england, colorful india. having people in one place and put them in another and see what happens. i think it's beautifully simple. >> rose: it reminds me of a story i've been told about, when you're-- your husband first proposed to you, and basically said,iment" you to marry me, "because he's come over, i think, because somebody had
died. and you said, "no, not here." >> he asked me on a wet night. >> rose: a wet night in britain or somewhere. >> quite true. >> rose: but how much-- so what do people of your caliber talk about when you are making a movie? >> he complains a lot. >> rose: oh, he does. do you complain? >> well, working in-- it was in contradiction to a sovereign principle i'd established over the years, which was never work or spend time in any country that ends in the word "stand." ( laughter ) but despite-- i'm not a great traveler. it's true. but, i mean-- >> you can't get him across his own doorstep. >> india became-- it's an astonishing place. >> rose: but you'd been there before. >> no, no. >> rose: so two of the people who are acting you take them to india had never been to india. >> amongst the cast, only--
amongst the seven central characters only one had been-- actually maggie had been, but only because her son of filming there. >> he was making a bollywood movie. >> the only one who traveled there was celia. and she had been before. >> and she had that wonderful experience of arriving-- she came to join us a few days afterwards. she arrived in dehli, and she got on to a train, and she sat there on this train and this gentleman walked in and sat opposite her and it was a long, long jr. ke, overnight, i think. >> yes. >> and. >> >> he said what was larry like? which is the question i would
ask, was he a nice guy? that kind of thing. >> are you curious about other people? >> yes, of course. one of the things you talked about-- you know what you talk about at the end of a day, a day's filming. what you don't talk about very often is, you know, my character was made to do this, and i don't know whether john was-- that never happened. but very often what was lawrence harvey like was very much -- >> rose: it's about the life you've lived rather than the craft of acting. >> yes. >> the very first night we arrived, we all unpacked. we said we'll meet in the bar. we came to the bar and the one person who was missing was tom. eventually he ambled through the door. he said, i'll tell you something. >> we said what. >> he said there's a bird out there that keeps saying, it's you i hate." >> rose: and you'll make the
movie with him because experience has been good so far. >> yes, if the script is good and the role is good. i love you like a brother, john. >> rose: but not if you have a bad script. >> well, he's smart about that. he reads something and thinks can i bring something to this? can i understand who this is? you know, is this a place i'm going to be useful? >> rose: what did you say about this character, your character? >> i like the idea of redemption. most of the people in the-- the characters in the movie don't quite know what they'll find when they get to india. they somehow hope for some sort of internal kind of revolution of it sorts, something like that. my character knows what he wants to find. >> don't give too much away. >> no, i know. ( laughter ). >> he's been to india before. he's lived there before. and he's going back to reclaim something of himself, which he sort of has left there. >> rose: we can touch a little bit on that.
it may have been a previous lover. that makes it more interesting. >> of course. kind of rediscover the love of his life, which is a person and not a sort of-- >> he's the only character who has a relationship with britain's former relationship with india. the colonial past is very much the world that he comes from, and that's not true of anybody else in the story. >> rose: if you're directing a scene between these two, do you just simply say they know the text. they know the lines. they know what they're doing. do you just sort of stand back or are you looking for something? >> no, no, i tell them what to say every single line. >> rose: no, you do not. tell me what you say. >> i'll tell you what-- >> exactly what you do. you know, i think-- you'd been talking a lot with you'd judi earlier about how does she do what she does. and i think acting and performing and interpreting
something is not a process that's susceptible to explanation, i think, and what you're trying to do-- obviously, my job as a film director is is where the camera is going to go, what the blocking is going to be, what room it's going to be, and where it fits into the story, what you come into the scene with. you know, i believe in the blueprint of the script so that the script needs to be very, very carefully calibrated to do its job in the total story. and the actor needs to be clear about that, which i assume, you know, intelligent actors are. but it should be clear in the script-- you just ask whether we're all on the same page, i think. you talk to each actor dinnerly, quite honestly. but the-- then if all of that is in place, my job is to stand
back and let them-- let the light glint off the mirror ball, as judi says, because somebody was saying, when judi walks on stage-- bill was saying unarmed-- that's what you want. ut an actor to simply respond in that moment. for example, the scene between of two of them -- >> rose: we're getting ready to look at one scene. this is where they talk about the trip to india. >> i was thinking about the longer scene. there's a scene where these two talk after dinner worn evening. and i said to tom, "this is where i think you might be. this is why wherejudi is going to be. this is what camera is going to do. i'm going to cover it this one take," off you go. and i remember tom said to me after a fantastic take-- or actually, three or four of them. i said, well, that was wonderful." and he said, "i had no idea how i was going to do that at all until i until i did it." you can bring film as close as you can to theater that way,ic,
by not boxing people in too much. and, obviously, if you're working with talent of this caliber and this depth of experience, you would be mad to intervene and shape them. i have no interest in doing that. it should have been done by the script in the first place, which i do work very closely with. >> that's also what john does so perfectly because he actually does place you. you come to the scene, and are you placed-- not just placed physically in two chairs. you know what is in his mind and you know what-- you know in a way what he expects. he has this way of not telling you how to do it. he doesn't tell you how to do it, but you know what he expects of you in a way, and you go on doing it, and then when he says, "that's it," you know that he's got what he wants. but how he suggests it without actually opening his mouth sometimes i don't know, but that's his great, great, remarkable quality. >> rose: do you get up-- if you know this is a scene with
tom, because he is as good as he is, that you want to make sure you're playing with your best game, or do you always play with your best game? you know what i mean. do you ratchet it up because this is-- >> no, only a place of interaction. like i say, it is only-- tom will say lines in a certain way, and i will listen to the lines, and answer in the way i think appropriate. and if it's not appropriate, john might just say one word-- i mean, he can do it in shorthand, but it will adjust between us or tom will-- tom will sense it. and he-- it's not-- sometimes it's hardly spoken about. but it is a question of this slightly adjusting. >> rose: and the better they are, the more you can hear. >> hmm. >> the more you can hear?
>> rose: meaning more inflection. you just say you listen to the way he says a line and, therefore-- somebody as good as he is or as good as you are can give it in a way that will stimulate. >> i suppose if we played it for a month it would change considerably. >> yeah. >> rose: she do the same thing for you? >> yes, exactly, exactly. i mean, you don't-- actors don't need to act very well in this. >> rose: i don't say that. >> look at him. he's no good. >> you can't stop yourself doing what do you, which is what we do. >> rose: all right, take a look at this. this is a scene between the two of you. here it is. ♪ ♪
>> how long since you've been here? >> 40 years. >> oh, as long as i was married. my husband died recently. >> oh, i'm sorry. >> do you think we'll be all right? >> don't ask me. i'm more scared than you are. no. it's going to be extraordinary. >> rose: you have said, tom, that talk-- talking about this, you have said that sentimentality is the enemy of a story like this. >> well, it's-- sentimentality is the enemy of art. a story-- what am i going to say? sentimentality attempts to make something more important than it actually is, the more moving,
more touching, more-- yes, you're just-- so i think that that's why this one, you know, music tells you how you have to feel. a particular scene or something of that sort. and you keep this down. this is what you don't want to do. art is judges by its own terms and not by its packaging. >> i think-- i think british people are allergic to sentimentality. and, therefore, very watchful about it. i mean, i'm not saying americans aren't, but i'm just saying -- >> rose: we're probably more prone than british. >> i think maybe a mainstream cinematic culture is one that-- as tom says, wants to prompt you into feeling a certain way, and perhaps americans in some ways, in good ways reasier and happier with emotions -- >> rose: part of it is exaggerating the obvious. >> maybe, maybe.
obviously, the subject matter of this film, that represents a danger, so you have to be careful to negotiate. >> sentimentality is essentially a lie. that's what i think. i don't think it's-. >> rose: a lie because it does not reflect authenticity? >> yeah, because it's purporting to be something that it isn't. that's right. >> yes, i think so. i think so. it's also-- it's an invitation to wallow in an emotion, which is-- which is greating. you have no right to tell people how to feel about things, i don't think. you just need to present them with something and allow them their own response to it. and it's-- because you have so many tools at your disposal with a film, not the least the fact you can pring people up very close to the emotion or you ca
can-- you can unfold a situation in such a way that it's almost impossible for them to react in any other way. you have to be very editorial tools are so man fold that you-- it's just something you snead to do. the voice and character of the film is that. you know, it's just how you play it. i mean, i admire alexander payne's films for that reason. his films are plainspoken. they don't-- they don't steer you into a particular kind reaction. >> rose: is it part of manipulating your emotion, the audience's emotion? >> yes, i think that's exactly what it is, yeah. >> rose: i think it was said, once you go to india your life will never be the same. >> i read that just before i went and wrote it in the back of my diary. >> rose: is it true? >> for me entirely true. >> rose: tom? do you feel that way?
>> it's a stellar experience. there are places i have been in the world where people say, remember the time you were in bulgaria? and i go, oh, yes, i remember. in fact i've never been to bulgaria so i don't mean anything. >> rose: we've established you don't like to travel. >> it is an indelible experience. i will never forget it, and i'm not sure-- i wouldn't the to repeat it. >> i wouldn't mind going back. >> rose: but what was it? >> for me, the culture shock i never really got over the sort of culture shock. and that essentially boiled down to the difference between rich and poor. poverty-- wealth beyond the dreams-- a wedding we watched which was dripping in gold and elephants and money. and 50 yards outside the gates
of the hotel, a woman washing her child in a puddle of water. and it's that sort of contrast, i could never be-- it stuck with me-- it sticks with me even now describing it, and i think what a big job india has because, you know, it's-- it's fantastic that they are making so much money now, they're becoming such an economic power in the world. i think politically, they can't help that woman with her baby, but the money people can. >> rose: can't help because the politics are so-- it's a messy democracy, corrupt and messy democracy? >> a billion and a-- >> and simultaneously it's spanning three or four centuries of experience. people are living right around where we were filming at the hotel, living an agricultural life which a sort of feudal life we would recognize more from several centuries ago. it's also got that problem of
trying to-- trying to develop a political system that encompasses the extraordinary contrasts-- i mean, africa is not dissimilar in some ways, but india is so-- you know, it's so populated that, you know, that is very difficult to cope with. but, you know, as the film relates, it's also-- i mean, you literally don't understand the meaning-- at least i didn't think i could understand the meaning of the word "culture shock" until i went there. it was overwhelming because there is so much coming at you, not just conceptually and economically and politically, as tom says, but also what judi's character refers to as the assault on the senses. it's an overwhelming place. but something-- and the film, actually, encompasses, i think, all possible reactions to the places, a character-- not tom, the character played by penelope
wilton in the film-- exemplifies a certain kind of reaction which is they can't tolerate the pla place. they find it shocking, and they find the contrast of rich and poor shocking. the very telling exchange between penelope wilton and billy nighy, who play a married couple, and bill's character has a completely open response to the country, and she can't leave the hotel. she's terrified by it and shocked by it. and he says, when i go out, all the kids smile at me." and she says, "because you give them money." it's a very telling little exchange which encompasses, i think, the possible responses to the place. but things are true in some ways, but of course she's missing one point, and he's perhaps not choosing to look at another. you can't forget it, and i think that the-- i know judi responded to and i did, too, is that there are some things extraordinary in the temperament of the people to
do with patience, endurance, openness, optimism. >> rose: you do the that? absolutely got it. >> it's just-- it affects you very deeply. and, you know, that spirit is probably at the center of the film in some ways. >> i always had the feeling fiwalked down the streets of a strange city-- let's say some city in bulgaria, that i'd never been before-- and i saw somebody sitting at the side-- a man, a person-- sitting at the side of the street drinking a cup of cove, i could sort of guess what was going through his head. i wouldn't be surprised-- you know, i cowl sort of-- when you see somebody on the side of the road in india, as you drove to work and you would see these people sort of gazing, i just thought, i have no idea what could be going through your head. optimism? what? survival? you know, it's a mysterious place.
>> rose: we'll attack a look at a scene with maggie smith. this is with judy and maggie smith. attack a look at this. >> this is where you'll stay. >> on my own? >> i know you're off your game, dear. lost your confidence, maybe. but you are a thoroughbred. you'll be back. >> what about you, mrs. greenslade? >> what about me? >> we haven't talked much, have we, you and i. will you stay? >> not sure what i shall to of do. nothing here has worked out quite as i expected. >> most things don't. but sometimes what happens instead is the good stuff. >> rose: so when you watch that, my dear, what were you
thinking when you watched that? >> what was i thinking? i was just looking at it and enjoying seeing mags very much. >> what do you have to say about that scene, when ol and i were working on the script, you know, the story as you know is about six or seven or eight or nine different stars intertwine, and should have these characters bump into other characters measure others, if you see what i mean. as we were approaching completing the work i said to ol, what are we doing? we have judi dench and maggie smith in this story and they have-- actually, it's referred to, she says we haven't talked much, have we, you and i? and she says, "my loss, evidently." so it was partly an awareness of that. >> rose: would you-- i mean, to make sure i understand the point-- if you were making this film over you would have created more scenes between them? >> well, it was one of the
things-- you know, it's quite a box of riches, and it's the beginning of a story, perhaps, because these people, obviously, there's a scene as you know earlier in the film where they all acell bell at an airport in london, and i took a bit of a liberty and suggested they might all end up sitting on a bench together but none of those people know each other at that point, and they don't know that their lives are going to be shared. and they're tonal beginning to share them now in the story. so i had to resist the temptation to make everybody have a scene with everybody else because-- well, the movie would never finish. >> we would still be there. >> yes, we would still be there. >> rose: did you end up with a movie that was different, certainly better than you you might have imagined going into this. >> of course, of course. no film worth its salt is a film that doesn't surprise you and doesn't exceed or divert from
your expectation in some way. you know, it's not a fixed thing. it's always a terrible moment for a director to see the assembly of a film, which is essentially when the editor puts all the scenes signature in the right order. and it's a suicidal moment for a director, usually. and i-- i treasure a quote from a playwrite, the first thing i eastern director, by arthur cope itch, we did a play together called "wings." it was originally a radio play and we did it on stage and eventually we did it as a television play. and we had a cowl of screenings, one right after the other, and he ran from the room after the second night and said i can't wait to get back to the theater where it's the same every night. meaning that you can feel completely differently about the film watching it one moment and watching it the next, even though it's identical, depending on who you're watching it with. i somehow got off the point there. but anyway, yes, the film
surprised me. in a very good way. >> rose: it's extraordinary seeing people you admire so much together in one film, and a film in which india is a character, all of that makes this a wonderful experience for the viewer. thank you. great to see you again. >> thank you. >> thank you. >> rose: back in a moment. andrei kostin is here. he is the carol and president of vtb bank. vtb is russia's second largest bank. the russian state owns 75.5% of the company. in recent year vtb has moved into retail and investment banking. kostin is here in new york for the opening of the new york branch of vtb capital, the firm's investment banking arm. i have pleased to have him here and have him back at this table. welcome. it's good to have you here because we're all interested in the globally and and we're looking at europe and at what could go wrong in terms of commodity prices, especially oil. so give us your own sense of how you look and how you assess
where we are in the global economy from both the developed countries as well as emerging markets. markets. >> well, if you look at emerging markets, we feel it's still produced quite a steady growth. we expect that russia maybe will not have the highest g.d.p. growth this year, but still doing between 3.5 and 4% g.d.p. growth. of course, america, it seems that the american economy have mixed feeling about. but still probably better than one could forecast in russia a year ago, two years ago. of course, the remaining concern is about europe. it looks that probably when everybody is was saying we left greece behind us, that's probably partly true. but on the other-- we definitely
saw that important event, development was that european governments managed to-- managed to establish some kind of... mechanism for europe. but news coming from spain and portugal, not very much encouraging. so i still believe there will be greatest area of concern will be europe for months to come. >> rose: what's necessary to be done, if anything? >> well, of course, it's difficult to say. because we are facing such crisis, not very often, but i think one of the answers is to strengthen the mechanism for support such as i.m.f., for example, the world pentagon, and russia is seriously considering providing alone for i.m.f., for helping such countries, which need help. and, also, i think europe will have to do more in order to
create a better, maybe larger scale mechanism for support. >> rose: is china in some kind of inflection point now? has begun to suggest that its growth rate will not number double digits? may be between 7% and 8%. it looks at some of the demands for its products and sees the markets may not be the same. >> i've just come back from china and my feeling is though the development might slow down a little bit, this will not cause immediate threat to the global economy. that's my opinion. >> rose: and do you sense that they're changing the attitude about their consciousy, the appreciation of their currency? >> well, i believe that chinese will be more flexible on the currency, but i still believe that it all has to be done to
convince them-- of the global trade and china as well. >> rose: what implication is it for all of us that are you a bank that is 75% state owned? >> well, you see, the new russian government, which will be formed after the intigration of mr. putin on the 7th of may, made the quite clear statement, and the future prime minister, that one of the key issues for the new government will be privatization of the russian economy. planning to sell shares of about 850 companies, including vtb. vtb is very much on top of the-- the government is prepared to sell all the shareses of vtb to private investors, including foreign investors. so we started to-- i personally initiated it this process five years ago by selling 25% to the global investors in new york and london and i'll be happy to
continue this process and to sell more shares. of course, subject to market conditions. >> rose: when you saw the 25%, was that in a sense a kind of testing to see how it would be if you mixed state ownership with private ownership. >> it was quite a radical leap because we had been 100% tateowned and all of a sudden we became a company with the participation of some leading hedge funds here on wall street. and it meantime that we had to behave like any other company by reporting to investors, meeting investors, answering questions between investors. and frankly speaking, though the government possessing the majority stake in vtb, the price of shares defined not by the government, defined by france here, because they are buying and selling. so for us they are quite an important investor, in spite of the fact that they are minority shareholders. >> rose: what kind of bank do you want to create, other than a
large one? >> well, my dream is to create international banking franchise, particularly focused on emerging markets. if you look at geography of vtb, we have a presence in 20 countries with a particular focus on countries like russia and china, vietnam, african companies and so on and so forth. we believe in the new economies, and i think we will be building our franchise further. >> rose: how will russia be different when mr. putin comes back into power? >> one will have to see. there are a lot of questions. mr. putin will be doing his third term, and of course, mr. putin received very substantial support during -- >> rose: at the same time -- >> at the same time. >> rose: it did not go as he expected, and some people view that as, in a sense, a rebuff to him. >> yes and no because i think at the end of the day, by having
54% of the vote in the first tour, i think mr. putin probably received more than many had expected. on the other hand, of course, there were some signs of discontent, of protest, which on the other hand is not so unusual for the world today because i personally think that there's a time for growing unrest and growing unhappiness among people, partly because of the crisis, partly in russia because some people-- mr. putin's policies, that's true. there's 50,000 or 80,000 or 100,000 people in the streets, with a very peaceful manifestation, and a broad range of representatives, starting from minority rights activities, and the hard-line
marxist-lennonnists, to liberals, and conservatives and other movements. q. you're suggesting there willg that will change russia, a grassroots uprising that topples the established-- >> i think it's a signal which mr. putin heard. mr. putin has,ic, quite a unique political inif youition, and he is really a politician, so he-- i think he heard these voice and that's why i think in his new term he will try very much to push our country forward and to make those people also be part of his team and to work further on building a more powerful russia, both economically and politically. >> rose: is it your sense russias to have a role, some suggest that-- an effort by russia to say we're players. and we're going to support syrians because they've been our friends and we don't abandon our
friends. and, therefore, what might have happened cannot happen because russia took a stand and china followed russia rather than the west. >> of course russia has a vested interest in different parts of the world, just as well as america. we are not considering ourselves today a super power by the fact we have nuclear weapons. i think is we're quite realistic on this. and we know without building up economy, you can hardly expect to be a leading nation in the world. so on the other hand, russian leaders on many occasion spoke against the unipolar world saying one country-- what might offend russia sometimes when america despisethe decision-- without the decision of the united nations making some decision which were unilateral. what raises concern, as you mention, case of syria. i spoke to the earn ambassador, what raises concern that know.
>> rose: you mean in moscow? >> yes. the west helps to replace the regime in arab countries, maybe not very democratic. maybe quite authoritarian, but as a result, we see the growth of radical islamic movement in this country. >> rose: does that worry russia? >> of course, of course. because we have islamic population in russia, and you see the chechen problem we have. on the one hand, america is trying to fight islamic fundamentalists if iran. on the other hand, we might have the same kind of regime in libya, in egypt, or in syria, and i think that's a great danger for the global political stability. so i think we should work together on country like syria, to keep the situation under control and not to allow islamic extremists to take power. >> rose: it's hard to stay in power if you're killing your own people. >> yes. >> rose: the range and
brutality that they have. >> i agree with this. but the transition period somebody done together. i think-- up until now, woe saw that those regimes are giving-- paving the way. when we remove those, or when the situation removes this regime, we see a very dangerous development of islam in this country, and i think no one thes to have such association. very dangerous. so i think we should work together. the united nations is very important and i'm glad members of the united nations managed to reach an agreement on the declaration of the united nations. i think russia is-- will be cooperating with america on this issue, but we feel that it should be mutual, mutual -- >> rose: russia cooperated more with the united states on iran? >> well, i think russia on the
one hand have-- iran is very close to russia, much closer than to america. we have our own interests, of course, in keeping peace in this region. >> rose: and it's a market for you and a commercial relationship. >> yeah, yeah, of course. on the other hand, again, we see some universal steps which america is not taking is somehow done without any consultation with the russian government or without accusation. i'll take one example that the russian government and congress took a decision on freezing all the financial transaction between iran and other banks. so we had to obey this, of course, fully. on the other hand, some people in russia, that critic the dollar as global currency, america is uses these. actually woo should not very much in line with the chart of
imenino f odor world bank. >> rose: does russia wish there was another second reserve currency that perhaps the united states should not have the dollar as the-- >> no, i mean, we understand that the dollar will stay as a major currency for the time being. but what they're trying to develop is definitely to work-- to use a ruble for the currency for bilateral trade between russia and the ucase, russia, bell russia, and maybe russia and some other countries. >> rose: russia has a dependence on natural resources, on oil and gas. how is it doing in trying to scheft away from that dependence at the core of its economic power and develop, for example, its own silicon value. that's the keys for the russian economy. when they ask about how russia is doing. russia is doing well because the oil prices are high. because other natural resources
are high. but we still haven't reached a substantial progress... from commodity export -- >> rose: and why not? >> well, for a number of reasons. i think one we didn't create the proper environment for investments. we don't have enough investments in these areas. other thing for example russia couldn't join the w.t.o. for a long time. and thanks to the american administration, by the way, we managed to reach this agreement now which also brings us closer to international cooperation and pairing the way for more cooperation partly because russia still didn't succeed in certain reforms, the legal system. russia still has a very high corruption level. many other things which creates problems for more investment coming into russia.
but the focus is there. i think both mr. putin and mr. medef will have another try to try to convert the russian economy within the next few years. >> rose: this is because you know the ipcoming president, vladimir putin, because you have had conversations and transactions with him, the impression in america is that he is surround by a group of former kgb colleagues and that's who is running russia. is that true? >> no, i wouldn't say so, no. of course, mr. putin is famous for being very faithful to his friends. that's true. but -- >> rose: so was mr. yeltsin. >> but flotall his friends are rich, and not all of them are in business. >> rose: but some of them are. have gotten very rich. >> yes, but there's nothing
wrong with having rich friends. >> rose: well, but there's nothing wrong with using the power of the state to make your friends rich. >> i think that's-- i think mr. putin doesn't have his children or daughters running alleged companies or things like this. >> rose: nepotism, we're talking about a number of people who have gotten enormously rich is of and the only thing you can find in their background is they are friend longstanding, with mr. putin. >> i think mr. putin-- when they move away from the beast of the olgar system. >> rose: including putting him in jail. well, that is a specific case, and i think-- yes, that specific case. but i think. >> rose: are you comfortable with mr. kortakovsky being there
jail. the book starts with, "behind every great fortune there's a crime." it's very true about where she. >> rose: mario puzo, who wrote "the godfather." it's very true when you talk about russia and the first stage of accumulating the first capital. so one can say about the selective approach here, but on the other hand, the question is whether mr. putin could be right to put 100 people in jail instead of one. i think will oligarch system which was dominating russia during the yeltsin era was a great danger. i think mr. putin moved it away to a much more competitive country in business. but if you ask me whether-- it was done enough? i would still say no.
i mean, mr. putin's friends still not-- they reach us. the 10 richest men in russia, for example. >> rose: they came from the yeltsin era. >> some came from the yeltsinera and some moved around and moved up. >> rose: after the fall of the berlin wall and the breakup of the soviet union did the united states miss a real opportunity to listen to russia, to treat russia with an understanding of confidence going through tumultuous times? . >> i can't complain. i would not complain, probably. if you talk about business community, i think they are quite realistic respond russia quite well. we probably would prefer to expect more understanding. we think sometimes it's a one-sided approach, and the
american administration-- it's not-- we don't even probably-- it still is quite surprising why is it still there? we would like to see more cooperation. we very much hope-- there's a very positive development during mr. obama's presidency between russia and america. >> rose: interesting. your judgment is the obama administration has reset the russian relationship and that between the president of the united states and the former prime minister and income category president, there's a very good relationship. certainly, there's a good relationship between the incoming prime minister, mr. medvedev, and the president. they seem to get along really well. >> the relationship between the leaders of our countries or between-- are always much better than in some other areas.
i think the press is responsible for this. you should be more accurate what you're saying about russia, probably sometime more understanding. so error to say but that is our impression sometimes. when politicians, they are probably more knowledgeable, maybe more realistic, i don't know. but we saw-- maybe not reset was not as successful as we expected, and particularly we have some still arguments. but it was a positive trend. and we very much hope that we can build up this cooperation for the future. but we need more cooperation politically, economically, and many other things. america is very important for russia, i have to say, and the relationship is very important, and we definitely are looking for more positive dialogue and more constructive relationship. >> rose: europe is still the
financial capital of the world? new york is still the financial capital of the world? >> of course. we are watching more and more-- looking more and more at the new export-- capital export countries like kleina or gulf people. for russia they might become quite important investors. >> rose: it's great to have you here. >> thanks very much. >> rose: i'm amused you're quoting mario puzo and many americans quote tolstoy. thank you. >> thank you. >> rose: thank you for joining us. see you next time. captioning sponsored by rose communications captioned by media access group at wgbh access.wgbh.org